So to be clear, although I expect the British to want to expand the war to secondary theaters, I don't see any reason why they would do this better than OTL. In particular, the Greek monarchy v. Venikelos situation is extremely complex and delicate- meaning that it's very susceptible to butterflies- but I see no reason why more British intervention in the region would be more likely to tilt the balance of Greek domestic politics in their favour rather than panicking (some of) the Greeks towards support for Germany.Would Britain in this scenario have any better luck getting Greece to make a rapid decision to logistically cooperate with establishing a line of supply and reinforcement to the Serbs through Salonika and the Vardar valley? Could the British sponsor a coup to get this done?
This is the logical response. However, from what I understand of the contemporary behavior, nearly everybody involved in or observing the war who hadn't yet mounted an attack themselves looked at the massive casualties befalling attackers and responded:On the other hand, although I do expect the British to end up with an escalating commitment on the Western Front, I would expect the situation to also make them even more enthusiastic about ventures to other theaters than they were OTL- expect some kind of British efforts to help the Serbs, attack the Ottomans, and seize the German Colonies at the very least. I expect this both because the narrower front is likely to be even more obviously deadlocked than OTL and because the war is likely less popular with the British chattering classes, which will make quick victories and public ties to Serbia (now Britain's official causus belli as they can't cite Belgian neutrality) more desirable.
Where is a better landing spot in the Adriatic, a contested beach or port on the Austrian shore, or landing in the friendly Montenegrin Bay of Kotor and marching north from there. The further north you land the closer you are to Germany, but there's mountain ranges between the Adriatic and Germany either way.How about a landing in the Adriatic aimed at getting into Germany through Austria?
As previously mentioned, the only genuine hawk in the British Cabinet was prepared to abandon British boots on the continent to get Britain into the war.The PoD requires Britain to join the war. If Britain joins the war all the war plans have the BEF being despatched to France.
No, the vast majority of the French colonial empire were restored after the Napoleonic Wars. The German colonial assets were trash compared to the Dutch or French equivalents, because the Germans joined the ranks of the colonial powers centuries late and were even late for the scramble for Africa. Most of the German colonial empire was simply a collection of money sink.Namibia wasn't third rate and as for the rest the same reasons as OTL, as war prizes understandable to the British population, to deny them to the Germans, because they were there, the last three centuries of British strategy etc.
Yeah, a British north-south line across Africa was a British aspiration in a similar way to the German aspiration for an east-west line across Africa which evolved into the MittelAfrica aspiration. I doubt if either aspiration would have been prioritised ahead of strategic objectives closer to home.In East Africa Tanganyika gives Britain a solid line of colonies running from the Cape of Good Hope in the South to Alexandria in the north.
If the Germans are not in Belgium, that would be an opposed landing and the British lack of amphibious capabilities was an unknown, unknown (to the British).For what its worth the RN did land the Royal Marines in Belgium to protect Ostend and then later at Dunkirk; these troops were not under the command of the BEF.
Only if Britain was prepared to initiate the violation of Belgian neutrality - good luck selling that to the British Cabinet.So a 'purely naval' contribution could have troops on the Continent and lead to an 'arm in the mangle' scenario that sucks the BEF in.
Define 'low risk'. I suspect OTL Gallipoli would be the best case scenario.However, I think that if the RMB/RND guarded the Channel ports and the TF guarded Britain then the BEF would be used against the Ottomans of whoever else Britain can conduct a low risk campaign against.
If Belgian neutrality was respected then the RMB/RND could go to Dunkirk instead of Ostend, the point being that the 'naval' campaign did include landing troops independently of the BEF to protect ports.If the Germans are not in Belgium, that would be an opposed landing and the British lack of amphibious capabilities was an unknown, unknown (to the British).
Only if Britain was prepared to initiate the violation of Belgian neutrality - good luck selling that to the British Cabinet.
As shit as Gallipoli was, it was nothing compared to the risk involved in the OTL Western Front. Failing that, a mix of OTL actions and proposals; Mesopotamia, Sinai and perhaps the proposed landing at Alexandretta(?).Define 'low risk'. I suspect OTL Gallipoli would be the best case scenario.
It's difficult to imagine how such REMFs could become entangled in French offensives, hundreds of miles away.If Belgian neutrality was respected then the RMB/RND could go to Dunkirk instead of Ostend, the point being that the 'naval' campaign did include landing troops independently of the BEF to protect ports.
I did suggest Gallipoli was the best case scenario. OTL the German excursion into Belgium saved the French Army from the worst excesses of Joffre's offensive doctrines. I shudder to think what the First Lord of the admiralty would dream up if he has the BEF at his disposal and wants to get into the action.As shit as Gallipoli was, it was nothing compared to the risk involved in the OTL Western Front. Failing that, a mix of OTL actions and proposals; Mesopotamia, Sinai and perhaps the proposed landing at Alexandretta(?).
Just to be clear a Rear Echelon Mother Fucker works in rear areas on supply and the like. The Royal Marine Light Infantry and Royal Marine Artillery that made up the Royal Marine Brigade in 1914 were supported by REMFs, they weren't REMFs.That's the role you imagined for them in this scenario.
That's OTL.The Royal Marine Light Infantry and Royal Marine Artillery that made up the Royal Marine Brigade in 1914 were supported by REMFs, they weren't REMFs.
To clarify, we're talking about a scenario where Britain has limited its contribution to only naval actions. Further as per OTL naval actions included landing Royal Marines in Ostend on Aug 27-30 and Dunkirk from Sep 19 where it was reinforced by the first Territorial unit deployed to France on 22 Sep. Therefore it's likely that a naval-only campaign will result in Royal Marines being deployed as the Advanced Base Force in France.That's OTL.
But you put any combat unit onto a safe billet where there is no chance of action, all takes on what would now be called Fobbits. Weren't called that in West Germany when I was there, but units at say, Augsburg or Mannheim, worry more about spit and polish and how clean the grounds were kept, than 'being a lean, mean, fighting machine' IIRC it was 3AD at Friedberg that the Brass had the guys polish their tanks, till they shone glossy Olive Drab- not a great look